‘Bounty Hunters’ Article Review
The natural eco-system thrives in a balance of productions and consumption within specific food chains and webs. When one species consumes more than the eco-system can manage to regenerate, then there is a risk that other species that rely on the same food chain will perish. Particularly, such species lack a predator which allows them to multiply exponentially hence making them a significant threat to the balance of the entire ecosystem. Hanna Hoag in the article ‘Bounty Hunters’ focuses on the invasive population of the lion fish in the eastern seaboard of the united states. The voracious predator was first identified in the 1980s and since then its destructive trail is quite evident. Particularly, the species gobbled up extensive areas of coral-reef fish extending from North Carolina to Venezuela (Hoag, 2014). Other than the destructive nature of the species is the fact that they reproduce exponentially with each adult female laying up to 2 million eggs annually. This combined with the lack of a predator allow for the significant growth of the population. Efforts to control the species have mainly involved hunting competition that seek to reduce the population of the lion fish at least within local waters.
In the article the author is keen to establish the detrimental impact that the lionfish has on the economic wellbeing and food security in the affected region. Beginning from 1985, the species has been responsible for the destruction of over 4 million square kilometers of ocean throughout the Caribbean, Gulf of Mexico and the entirety of the United States Atlantic coastline especially in the south. Not only does the species affect the coral-reef but also the livelihood of the local communities. For instance, A DNA analyst working with a sample of 157 lionfish identified 43 crustacean and 34 fish species from their stomach contents. Many of these consumed species such as the parrot fish, French grunt and graysby are an essential sources of food for the local communities (Hoag, 2014). Depletion of these essential species would mean deprivation of a means of livelihood for these people which would leave them in economic jeopardy. Besides, existence of the lion fish also hurts tourism which is strongly anchored on the sea food and beautiful sceneries provided by the Coral-reefs.
The other concern addressed by the author is whether the hunting competitions are an effective approach to the problem. Given previous outcomes on similar attempts to curb destructive species such as pythons in Florida, the attempt to curb the population of lion fish (Hoag, 2014). While regulating the population of lion fish in the entire ocean may be rather daunting, the focus is to at least prevent the encroachment of local waters by the invasive species.
In related studies, conservation of the oceans across the globe has been a matter of concern in the recent past. Issues such as global warming, rising levels of carbon levels and pollution of beaches and oceans using various pollutants are posing a major threat on the aquatic ecosystem. Morris & Whitfield (2009) observes that, human action both on land and in water has significant implication on the health of oceans which has contributed to the rapid depletion of animals and vegetation in oceans across the globe. Damage on the ocean eco-system has very real and serious implications on the lives of coastal communities. For instance, depletion of fish and other animals cripples the coastal economies that rely on the oceans for food, and other forms of economic activities. Vigilant conservation efforts will go a long way in ensuring that the livelihoods of the affected communities are protected. Particularly involving the local communities through sensitization and education on the importance of the ocean ecosystem will have a significant impact on how they utilize the resources made available by the ocean (Johnston & Purkis, 2015). Basically, coastal communities need to understand the providence of the oceans only exists if there exists constructive symbiosis. Even so, scientific methods can be applied to control the population of lion fish to ensure that they do not cripple the balance of the ocean ecosystem.
With various methods applied to control invasive species, there are a number of ethical concerns. The idea of hunting a particular species for sport or with the intention of killing them is somewhat absurd. Many people would not sit well with the idea of killing huge numbers of a certain species. However, I agree with the author’s point of view given that the population and feeding habits of the lion fish are a threat to the entire ocean ecosystem. Their existence in large numbers hurts the ecosystem making it difficult for other species to thrive. In addition, the same species threatens the coastal economies by a great extent. Ideally the cost and benefits born out of the existence of the species naturally does not match. This justifies the move to reduce their numbers along the United States coastal line.
Hi there, would you like us to help you do this question?
We are professional assignment help service for students. Get your papers written starting at just $11.99 a page.Do my question
Hoag, H. (2014). Bounty Hunters: Destructive lionfish are invading coral reefs in the Americas, but fishing competitions can help keep the problem speciens in check. Pdf.
Johnston, M. W., & Purkis, S. J. (2015). A coordinated and sustained international strategy is required to turn the tide on the Atlantic lionfish invasion. Marine Ecology Progress Series, 533, 219-235.
Morris Jr, J. A., & Whitfield, P. E. (2009). Biology, ecology, control and management of the invasive Indo-Pacific lionfish: an updated integrated assessment.
How it works
Why our online essay writing service?
Let us cover any of your writing needs!